Motorable Local Roads Bridge Programme (MLRBP) – Phase III

Project completed

MLRBP III will contribute directly to improved livelihoods of 1.2 million rural people through technical assistance in bridge building and facilitating improved access. Lack of access to services, markets and opportunities remains one of the reasons for high poverty. Bridges on local roads are critical for an all year round access for the rural poor, creating economic and social development opportunities for them, and reducing the huge economic costs they incur for travel, trade, health and farm inputs.

Country/region Topic Period Budget
Employment & economic development
Agriculture & food security
Business support & economic inclusion
Rural development
Agricultural services & market
Agricultural development
01.03.2017 - 31.12.2020
CHF  10’868’000

It is evident from the poverty disparity that there are strong connections between poverty and access to economic and social services. About 22% of the rural population still has to walk more than 4 hours in the hills and 2 hours in the Terai to reach an all-weather road network. It is not unusual for children to walk two to three hours to school, for a family to walk half a day to the nearest weekly market, and for a pregnant woman to walk two days to a health post. The performance of the agricultural sector, which generates about one third of the national income, continues to be poor. Most often, rural crops and products are not adequately sold in the markets. Lack of access (without motorable bridges) is a serious constraint for economic and social development. In addition, the social and economic vulnerability of people, especially of disadvantaged groups (DAG[1]s) is exacerbated by their remoteness from markets and their lack of access to basic services, economic opportunities and natural resources.



[1] Socially discriminated and economically poor people/households




The overall goal of the Programme is: ‘People in the programme districts have improved livelihoods’.

Target groups

1.2 million people will directly benefit from improved physical access.

DAGs in the project areas will receive more than 1 million person days of short term employment.

Medium-term outcomes

Outcome 1:

People, especially DAGs use motorable access provided by all-weather roads to services and opportunities.

Outcome 2:

National and local institutions apply and enforce appropriate local road bridge strategy.


Expected results:  

Output 1: People in the project areas have more all-weather roads through the construction of 200 additional bridges.

Output 2: DAGs within the zone of influence of the motorable bridge get 1 million person-days of employment in bridge construction works.

Output 3: DAGs are represented in Users Committees, construction and maintenance groups and hold at-least one key decision making position in each committee.

Output 4: The Local Bridge Section (LBS)/DoLIDAR strengthens its capacity to produce Norms, Standards, standard type designs and piloted new type of bridges/river crossings and approaches.

Output 5: The Local Bridge Sections (LBS) in District Development Committees (DDCs)/District Technical Offices (DTOs) strengthen their capacities to build local road bridges with appropriate technology.

Output 6: The private sector strengthens its capacity to survey, design and construct local road bridges.

Results from previous phases:  

With the completion of 95 bridges, vehicles are now operating year round along 1525 kms of roads in 75 districts benefitting more than 600’000 people. More than 400’000 person days of employment were generated, out of which, a total of 280’000 person days (70%) of work went to DAGs from the Zone of Influence (ZoI).

Traffic and freight volumes on the completed bridges have increased by 37% and 42%, respectively. Though it is still early days, it is reported that the freight costs (transporting goods) have decreased by 5.1%, after the construction of the bridges.

The Government’s confidence in local bridge building has increased due to the support provided by MLRBP in the areas of bridge planning, designing, and construction supervision. A comprehensive Bridge Information Management System (BIMS) with Bridge Screening and Prioritization Criteria (BSPC) has been prepared, persuading a rational selection of the local roads bridges by the districts and Department of Local Infrastructure Development and Agricultural Road (DoLIDAR). 

Directorate/federal office responsible SDC
Credit area Development cooperation
Project partners Contract partner
Private sector
  • Swiss Private Sector

Other partners

Ministry of Federal Affairs and Local Development (MoFALD), DoLIDAR and 75 partner districts

Coordination with other projects and actors

Other local road projects of the GoN

Budget Current phase Swiss budget CHF    10’868’000 Swiss disbursement to date CHF    10’557’836
Project phases Phase 4 01.01.2021 - 30.06.2025   (Current phase)

Phase 3 01.03.2017 - 31.12.2020   (Completed)

Phase 2 01.06.2016 - 28.02.2018   (Completed) Phase 1 01.10.2010 - 31.05.2016   (Completed)